Articles filed under Jackson, Mike

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  • Stratton Lock and Dam gets overhaul Aug 20, 2014 8:56 PM
    Construction will begin soon on a $16.7 million improvement project at the Stratton Lock and Dam on the Fox River in McHenry County. Illinois DNR officials claim the Stratton Lock and Dam Life Extension Project will improve three components of the lock and dam facility.

  • Basore, Potter headed for Hall of Fame Aug 13, 2014 7:25 PM
    Warrenville's Dan Basore is among the inductees to the Illinois Outdoor Hall of Fame.

  • Fishing’s magic hour well worth waiting for Aug 13, 2014 7:23 PM
    Magic hour in fishing - late in the day, when there's often a flurry of feeding activity - is well worth the wait.

  • Crossing the lake, and crossing off another bucket list item Aug 7, 2014 12:39 PM
    A ferry trip across Lake Michigan led to a terrific experience at the northern end of lower Michigan, where Boyne Outfitters helped provide a great experience in the pursuit of trout.

  • Industrious anglers will find fly rod rewards Jul 31, 2014 12:26 PM
    Using a fly rod to pursue bluegills in retention ponds can be a delightful angle on suburban fishing, as Mike Jackson explains in his weekly outdoors column.

  • Mayfly madness on the upper Mississippi Jul 31, 2014 12:26 PM
    Midsummer mayfly emergences caused their usual mayhem along many areas in the upper and lower Midwest, and particularly along the upper Mississippi River drainage recently. Mike Jackson has more in this week's outdoors notes, which includes a local fishing update.

  • Summer fishing means battling the weeds Jul 24, 2014 9:43 PM
    Some of the area ponds and even lakes have been suffering from an overgrowth of algae and heavy weeds. But some anglers have been able to score when working the open pockets, especially for big bluegills and largemouth bass.

  • This walleye technique is just plane effective Jul 24, 2014 9:40 PM
    Using planer boards has helped pro walleye angler Tommy Skarlis make a name for himself, and it's a tactic that can help anyone in pursuit of this species.

  • Wading’s evolution has been worth the wait Jul 16, 2014 4:41 PM
    Most of us anglers got our start in the budget bracket of the wader market, but it's impressive to see just how far this product has come.

  • Surviving the outdoor bites of the season Jul 10, 2014 12:03 AM
    Like so many others in the Northwest suburbs, we who have trudged through the jungles of the world and cityscapes, and wound up as the main course for flying bugs, I for one have finally fought back with great vigor. When I lived in Minnesota the state bird there (mosquito) took liberties with human flesh, my flesh and that of my two small children. I tried educating my wife then not to wear perfume if we were going to sit in our backyard. The neighborhood mavens knew the sweet-smelling fragrances would be like a radio beacon calling in the hordes of divebombing mosquitoes. And they came, flying in every direction. This was back in 1971, and anti-mosquito technology was questionable, to say the least, so every trip into the outdoors was another lesson in survival techniques and lots of repeated scratching while inventing new expletives. Over the course of time chemical companies that were busy manufacturing gooey, pasty-like, anti-mosquito liquids for the military, primarily in the World War II, South Pacific campaigns, saw their markets expanding to the consumer. Their liquids still smelled like something left over from high school science-lab experiments gone bad. And with decades of personal experience, I am honestly telling you I have tried almost kind of modern-day sprays, with and without DEET. Of course, now the “keepers of safe and clean bodies” decry the use of DEET because of claims of harmful reactions to both body and psyches alike. I don’t have to remind you we here in the flatlands have gone through a very wet spring and early summer. Perhaps you have seen those small, yellow trucks with rear-mounted nozzles in your neighborhood, spewing supposed nontoxic to human sprays of mosquito killer in between homes. The trucks are part of a very small army of mosquito hunters, but I question their actions and results, only because I honestly don’t know what’s worse for my household, the mosquito bites or the actual chemical spray. Could the result worth the risk? So now I’m trying something that seems to be working like a champ. I have two ThermaCELL® products, and even under these very tough 2014 mosquito conditions, the break in the prior pattern of mosquito attacks has made a marked difference. On most trips to a lake or river I take a portable, clip-on ThermaCELL unit that has come through for me every single time. The other device is the stay-at-home, backyard deck ThermaCELL lantern that allows my wife and me to sit and enjoy our beautiful backyard and landscaping at dusk as well as beyond. The sunset time period used to be air-raid time for us with swarms of biters invading our space. ThermaCEL mosquito repellent appliances are powered by a single butane cartridge. Butane provides the cordless, portable heat that activates the patented devices. The heat generated by the butane cartridge is directed to a metal grill that is part of the design of the unit. A small mat, saturated with repellent, sits on top of the metal grill. Heat vaporizes the repellent, allowing it to rise into the air. The latest test run occurred when my wife and I went to one of the fireworks displays during the July Fourth celebration. We sat on damp grass, sometimes a killer spot for prospecting mosquitoes. I used the portable, belt-clip unit, and nary a bite was encountered. My wife was thrilled and bite-free. • Contact Mike Jackson at, and catch his radio show 6-7 a.m. Sundays on WSBC 1240-AM and podcast at

  • Perch opportunity beckons on the lakefront Jul 2, 2014 6:11 PM
    Perch fishing is a good bet along the Lake Michigan shoreline in July.

  • Watch what you eat, but enjoy the urban fishery Jul 2, 2014 6:10 PM
    The Chicago River certainly has pollution problems, but there's no doubt that some more desirable game fish are showing up in its waters.

  • Color me skeptical on Chicago River catfish Jun 25, 2014 6:52 PM
    The Chicago River is surely less polluted than in the past, but that doesn't make it a great sportfishing option. The release of catfish fingerlings should provide some indication about the overall water quality of the drainage system, but columnist Mike Jackson isn't convinced it will prove much.

  • State eases Lake Michigan perch fishing ban Jun 18, 2014 5:34 PM
    Starting in 2015, yellow perch fishing will be allowed in July on Lake Michigan, but it will not be allowed from May 1 through June 15 to protect spawning stock. Mike Jackson looks back on the controversial ban's history in today's outdoor notes.

  • There’s no perfect lure, but in-line spinners come close Jun 18, 2014 5:36 PM
    Inline spinners often prove to be just the kind of flashy, fish-triggering lures that get the job done.

  • Put the scale aside and enjoy the action Jun 11, 2014 6:19 PM
    Length and weight are certainly valid methods of measurement when it comes to a fishing outing, but so is learning to simply enjoy the moment and the variety of an extended bite.

  • Angling’s steady pull, in the generational sense May 28, 2014 4:26 PM
    The tug of a fish on the line is universal, as are the connections we make with our families, across generations.

  • Limited no-wake conditions on Fox Chain May 28, 2014 4:26 PM
    The Fox Waterway Agency has issued a no-wake ruling for Zone A (from the Algonquin spillway to the Stratton lock and dam) and Zone B (from the Stratton lock and dam north to the mouth of Pistakee Lake). But as of this writing, the Fox Chain at large has not been placed under a no-wake ruling.

  • Great angling rewards await the patient wader May 21, 2014 6:22 PM
    Fishing alone in small streams is a blast, be beware some of the dangers - such as the occasional patch of boot-sucking mire.

  • Be prepared for your spring fishing opportunity May 21, 2014 6:24 PM
    Typically volatile spring weather patterns make it important to keep tabs in order to make the most of your opportunities.

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